This week in PR (17 May)

About the author

Richard Bailey Hon FCIPR is editor of PR Academy's PR Place Insights. He teaches and assesses undergraduate, postgraduate and professional students.


Profession and ethics

Purpose, climate and ESG


Consulting, skills and careers

  • Louise Thompson: Ageism is alive and kicking in the Communications profession. Let’s discuss… (14 May)
    It seems as if for many recruiters, “age” is the downside of “experience.” Which is a ridiculous stance if you think about it for even one second. But I have no doubt that this is something many seasoned communications professionals are experiencing at the moment as they search for their next role.’

Gender, diversity, health and wellbeing

  • Maja Pawinska Sims: “Career Breaks In PR Should Be Part Of Inclusivity Policy” (15 May)
    A roundtable discussion held by the Company of Communicators – part of the City of London’s “livery” group of trade associations – concluded that career breaks by PR practitioners should be normalised by recruiters and hiring managers, rather than stigmatised.’

Politics, public affairs and public sphere


  • Jack Olins: Starmer sets his stall out to win over Essex Man (16 May)
    ‘His commitments – to deliver economic stability; cut NHS waiting times; launch a new border security command; set up Great British Energy; crack down on antisocial behaviour; and to recruit 6,500 new teachers – are likely to be the first steps a Labour government would take if they won the next election.’
  • Leticia Callista: The UK ranks second in soft power, but could it lose its position soon? (no date)
    ‘In short, anything a country does or possesses that can influence the preferences or perceptions of other nations through appeal and attraction can fall under soft power.’
  • MHP Group: Do Keir’s six steps mark the end of the five missions? (16 May)
    As much as any political campaigner hopes (and expects at their peril) for their message to be digested, the truth is that you have to keep finding ways to get the electorate to understand what it is you stand for and what you will deliver in government.’

Research, data, measurement and evaluation


  • Gini Dietrich: Navigating the Future of PR Measurement With AI (16 May)
    One of the biggest challenges in the PR industry is that we tend to measure outputs versus outcomes—tactics instead of goals. But this tool [CoverageImpact] claims to take one of your tactics—media placements—and correlate those efforts with something the organization cares about, such as sales, stock price, search trends, donations, website visitors, and more.’
  • Mandy Pearse: Putting data at the heart of PR (15 May)
    ‘It’s fundamental to professional PR practice that we do not work on hunches and guesses. We gather the data and combine this with qualitative research. This gives us the numbers to drive targets. It also provides audience insights to refine messages, channels, content and design.’

Behaviour and influence

Crisis, risk and reputation


Internal communication 


  • Belinda Gannaway: Why people teams can’t get enough of employee personas – part one (13 May)
    ‘Employee personas are fictional representations of different types of employees within an organisation, based on common characteristics, for example behaviours, goals and needs. Similar to customer personas used in marketing and customer experience (CX), employee personas help organisations better understand their workforce and tailor experiences to meet the diverse needs of their employees.’

Media, digital and technology


  • Katie Macaulay with Linda Zebian: The communicator’s communicator [podcast] (15 May)
    ‘How are you going to know about things in your community, everything from your community to the global scale if it’s not for journalists? Influencers cannot do this work. Influencers aren’t held to a higher standard. Instead of being so obsessed with your influencer obsession, be so obsessed with a journalist.’
  • Matt Redley: OpenAI releases “emotional” AI chatbot update (14 May)
    ‘The “o” in GPT-4o stands for “omni”, referring to the model’s ability to handle text, speech, and video. The model builds on the capabilities of OpenAI’s GPT-4, the company’s language model that generates text from text and visual information.’
  • Neville Hobson: Understanding AI in the Context of History (10 May)
    ‘The dual perspective of optimism and caution provides a balanced approach that can help maximise AI’s benefits while addressing potential drawbacks. As AI continues to evolve, so too must our approaches to managing its impact on our world.’

Academic, education and training